Media release

Heavy rain predicted for North Otago and Dunedin

Tuesday 20 February 2018

With a heavy rainfall warning in place for North Otago, Otago Regional Council (ORC) are closely monitoring river levels for Otago. The most severe weather is expected over the next 24 hours, with the weather situation easing from late tomorrow morning.

Outlook for North Otago

A heavy rainfall warning is in place for North Otago, with Metservice predicting rainfall totals to 60 to 90mm to fall in the 22 hours from 1pm today. Rainfall intensities for North Otago are expected to peak at 10 to 15mm per hour. People should be aware of rapidly rising water levels in North Otago rivers. Peak river flows of around 130 cubic metres per second are expected between 3 to 5am tomorrow (Wednesday), at the Kakanui at Clifton Falls site. At this level of river flow there is likely to be surface flooding around some North Otago Rivers. At 12pm today, 30mm of rain had already fallen in the North Otago catchment. ORC will be monitoring the situation through the night.

Outlook for Dunedin

A heavy rainfall watch is in place for Dunedin, with Metservice predicting rainfall totals of 40mm over the duration of the weather event. Rainfall intensities are expected to peak at 5 to 8mm per hour. Minor surface ponding is expected. However, ORC is not expecting flooding in Dunedin or on the Taieri flood plain from the Taieri River.

Outlook for Central Otago and Maniototo

Widespread rain is expected for Central Otago and Maniototo. Metservice is predicting rainfall totals of 50 to 70mm over the 24 hour period until midday tomorrow (Wednesday).

Stay up-to-date through these channels:

ORC website:

For flow and rainfall information: